Missionary Pilot Steve M

Hi Aleph,
Of course, I have no hard evidence regarding the efficacy of using electric shock on snake bites - especially since you never know if a person is venomized or not. However, I have used the stun gun on about 3 dozen snake bite victims. All survived, except for one young boy - who was nearly dead by the time they got him to me. He had been bitten about 2 hours earlier and had reacted by running around in a panic. There was a girl who had been bitten and was already feeling symptoms by the time I got to her. She was fine the next morning. Most of the bites I have treated were from death adders - which are usually fatal if the snake actually delivers the venom. I always began with by immobilizing the limb and applying a constricting bandage to the leg (or, in a couple of cases, arm). I always left the constricting bandage on for 24 hours.

We did see one dramatic result in the case of a bee sting. The President of our mission came to Papua New Guinea for a visit and was stung by a bee on his finger. Immediately the finger began to swell. One of the people there had a stun gun and used it on his finger. We actually saw the swelling go down in a matter of minutes and he said that the pain subsided almost entirely.

I did not find that electric shock treatment worked as well on stone fish venom. I'm not sure what is so different about it- but then, it's a mystery to me why stunning a snake bite works in the first place.